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Barry bolts ‘Dick & Jane’

Sonnenfeld exits laffer; prod'n postponed until March

Six weeks away from a planned production start date, helmer Barry Sonnenfeld has ankled Columbia’s “Fun With Dick and Jane” comedy remake starring Jim Carrey and Cameron Diaz.

Sonnenfeld’s reps confirmed the split without comment.

As it hunts for a new director, Columbia and producer Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment are now planning to mount production with the cast intact next March after Carrey has wrapped on “Lemony Snicket” for Paramount and DreamWorks.

Early this year, Sonnenfeld exited that Carrey starrer with some acrimony shortly after Paramount brought on DreamWorks to co-produce (Daily Variety, Jan. 12). Brad Siberling will now helm.

“Fun” came together quickly this spring because Carrey was looking to work with Sonnenfeld and wanted to lense a comedy before production started on “Lemony,” which was pushed back to the end of this year after Sonnenfeld’s departure.

Columbia and Imagine wanted to put together “Fun with Dick and Jane” — remake of the 1977 heist laffer starring George Segal and Jane Fonda as a middle-class couple who turn to robbery to pay their bills — on an extremely tight schedule.

Scribes Judd Apatow and Nick Stoller were tapped to pen the updated script in June and handed in their draft earlier this month, shortly before Diaz signed on to co-star.

The producers said they remain committed to the project, but that in the end, the production schedule was too ambitious and a September start would be premature.

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